Spring Is Here
Report Date: April 1, 2019
These next two months (April and May) are probably the best two months of the entire year to fish in South Florida. The main reason is due to the variety of species that can be caught. So far the sailfish season this year has definitely been below average. We still catch sailfish on every trip but have not seen big numbers consistently. Last year April and May were definitely better than January and February so everyone is hoping the same for this year. I guess we are a bit spoiled when 3 or so sailfish a day is not good enough and everyone is seeking double digits releases. Besides sailfish though (which will show up in April) we are already catching more kingfish including a few that are upwards of 30 plus pounds. These big smoker kings will become more prevalent in these next two months and are certainly a blast to catch on light tackle, especially when they air it out on the kite baits. It’s quite the sight to see a big kingfish 20 or more feet in the after trying to eat your surface kite bait.
The bigger blackfin tunas of over 30 pounds will start showing up as well. This year we have been catching plenty of 10 to 20 pound blackfin tunas almost daily seeing the bigger tunas is something that everyone is anticipating. Cobias are another spring fish and I must say practically every boat in the fleet caught a few cobias last week. Some of the cobias that were caught where cruising along the surface with big leatherback turtles. Some were caught on the bottom and some were caught just flatlining and drifting live baits on the top. This influx of cobias should last well into the end of this month. Last on the list of potential springtime predators are mahis. Although we have been catching mahis all winter long, spring is when we see the bigger mahis on the edge. These fish will stick to the edge until about late May when they start spreading out in the Gulfstream.
As I mentioned the sailfish season has not been banner but what has been banner this whole year has been the daytime swordfish. Usually prime swordfish season is October and November and a decent amount caught throughout the year, this year the swordfishing has been red hot all year long. We have caught swordfish on every trip these last two months. Our biggest was 331 pounds and although that is a very respectable size fish, just yesterday a 757-pound swordfish was caught in the Keys. This is one of the largest if not the largest swordfish I have heard caught here in Florida. These bigger fish are pushing north this time of year and some of the bigger ones are already being caught here in South Florida. I am certainly looking forward to more swordfish trips this month.
As you can tell the next two months offer a lot of variety and opportunity for great fishing. I still have dates open for April and May so if you are looking at bending the rod and catching fish, now ids the time to book your trip.
Capt. Dean Panos